Washington, Aug 19: The United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has banned United States airlines from flying over Syria due to safety concerns posed by the ongoing violence in the country. The FAA had previously advised United States operators against flying over Syria and the new rule requires them to contact the agency before operating in the airspace, Xinhua reported.

“Due to the presence of anti-aircraft weapons among the extremist groups and ongoing fighting in various locations throughout Syria, there is a continuing significant potential threat to civil aviation operating in Syrian airspace,” the FAA said in a statement Monday.

The agency said that it is prudent to prohibit US carriers from flying into, out of, and over Syria, based on an “updated assessment of the risk” and the “lack of any requests from operators wishing to fly in this airspace”.